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Saga - Legends "Rage, rage, rage against the dying of the light" (drama about Palp´s niece, a mix of legend & canon

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by AzureAngel2, Jul 11, 2014.

  1. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    @earlybird-obi-wan & @Chyntuck: Sometimes it is better not to know and have the illusion of safety. Nagina never had that, not with Sheev. But she stays hopeful. That is how she is.

    Okay, the count-down for this story is on, @DarthUncle & @Kahara.

    (Still Chapter 34)


    The next morning Orson is called to an off-world emergency meeting with Tarkin. I brace myself for the onslaught immediately. There is not much that I can do. I drag the rocking chair towards the window that gives the best view on the garden gate.

    Tasia, my white Loth-Cat, hops on my lap. It had taken her one week to snap out of her dark mood. This is not about having to share me with an avian life form all of a sudden. For her taste I have been on holidays for too long.

    I smile to myself.

    Feline creatures are known to be difficult when it comes to acts of forgiveness. But right now she is looking for tender loving care and I, in return, do not want to die on my own.

    I close my eyes and lean deeper into the rocking chair.

    My fingers run through her soft fur, teasing out satisfied sounds that vibrate into my own body. Perhaps if my uncle would possess a pet, he would do more good. I am sure of it.

    The chair moves back and forth, rocking Tasia and me like a cradle. I actually never had a cradle. The first years of my life I have slept in a crate that was originally meant for gathering apples.

    “I have never told this to anybody, but Orson had smelled nicely of apples, when I first met him,” I say, tears swinging in my voice. “His mother had been working in the Krennic orchard the entire morning, before she went to visit my fosters.”

    Tasia does not answer, but I can tell by the movement of her ears that she is paying attention.

    “He had been crying for hours. His cheeks had the colour of an Ambrosian apple. I am still smitten by him. Some things never changed between us.”

    The Loth-cat does not answer directly, but starts to milk tread on my lap with her tail swinging around excitedly.

    “I know you still do not like him, but please keep him company when I am gone.”

    Tasia freezes.

    There is a familiar sound outside.

    My lids flatter open and I stare at my crono.

    Exactly after one hour after Orson’s departure, a speeder bike has stopped in front of my property.

    It is not Alexsandr Kallus though, but someone I would have never expected. Especially not here, in such a small settlement as Jhothal. I have seen the copper-skinned face on recent local holonet reports. It is Lothal’s newly minted head of state.

    “Governor Azadi,” I call out, when I hurry out of my cottage to greet him. “What an honour! How may I serve you?”

    “You are a hard person to find, Mistress Anil. I had to bribe a lot of people to get hold of you.” His blue eyes burn with an intensity that reminds me of Sheev. “But a qualified kindergarten teacher like you is a rare speciality.”

    “Like a kyber crystal?” I joke, but the truth is that I want to test if the politician knows what he has right under his feet. The planet crust is full of them. They sing their songs to me, especially when I am asleep. Sheev must have known the soothing effect they have on me.

    “Kyber crystals?” Governor Azadi frowns. “They cannot be found in Lothal’s soil, believe me. Doonium veins are the rarest thing to find around here.”

    “You are not here to talk with me about mining, are you?” I say as I open the gate for him.

    “No indeed, Mistress Anil. I am actually here to hire you for my new day care centre,” he answers bluntly.

    Astonished, I take the white haired giant in. I can not detect any lie.

    “I want to keep my pre-election promises to my loyal voters. Especially, when it is up to educational matters. Lothal needs to invest in its youth, too. We have more to offer to the Empire than just mines and natural resources.” A charming smile flashes on like a spot light. “A person with your skills and know-how comes in handy. Your CV shows that you gathered a lot of teaching experience on the Core Worlds.”

    As much as I would like to believe in the governor’s devotion, something fishy is happening here. “I have sworn to myself never to work for a Day Care Centre again since...”

    He holds up an impatient hand. “Kuat Drive Yards did not deserve a woman as bright as you and Coruscant never should have let you go in the first place. But Capital City needs you very much. Its children need you. Duty calls.”

    “What about my responsibilities around here in Jhothal?” I throw up my hands in despair and this gesture is not acted. “What about the crèche?”

    His gaze does not leave my face. “I will handle the matter with greatest care, believe me. You do not need to worry, Mistress Anil.”

    Even if Governor Azadi sets everything in motion, it is only a question of time until my uncle will find out about it. But I might enjoy it as long as it lasts. Therefore I start to suggest, “I would like to see the place before...”

    “Oh of course,” he interrupts me. He is not a very patient man, but he seems not unkind either. “I could take you there right away.”

    My eyes spot the spare helmet, that is attached to the speeder’s broad saddle. “What makes you think that I am coming with you on such a short notice?”

    He winks at me. “I have seen your day’s schedule. You have the time.”

    I roll my eyes at him. “That is cheap.”

    His grin is so light that it almost hurts my eyes. “Perhaps you can at least offer some ideas for the children.”


    (To be continued!)
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2018
    Chyntuck, DarthUncle, Kahara and 2 others like this.
  2. Kahara

    Kahara Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Mar 3, 2001
    Ah, yes, the Mandatory Feline Shunning Period. :p A phenomenon that any cat owner knows well. Nice to see Tasia again!

    Governor Azadi was unexpected, and it's very interesting that he's so invested in where Nagina goes to teach. Definitely some kind of plot going on there, but I don't know what it could be. [face_thinking] He was always a mysterious figure in Rebels, so it's nifty to see part of that past we didn't learn much about.

    The intrigue just keeps getting deeper. :cool:
  3. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Aug 31, 2004
    LOL The possessive white loth-cat like the one in "Diamond in the Rough" ;) and I agree, that Governor is up to no good. [face_worried]
    DarthUncle, Kahara and AzureAngel2 like this.
  4. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    @Kahara: Then there is more about the good governor to come in the next updates then. Your wish is my command! Thanks for stopping by!

    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha: Oh, you also noticed that. Tralala! I could not help it! Feel very hugged now.

    And now that we are close to the end of this long, long story and I am back at work tomorrow, let me give you all a mid-week update:

    (Still Chapter 34!)


    During my last night in his apartment Sheev has given me a sneak preview on his educational plans. Plans, I do not approve of. Like the majority of his plans to rule the known universe and stretch out his greedy hands to the Unknown Regions.

    I give careful side glances to Governor Azadi, while we walk his day care centre together. There have been places like this on Coruscant for shift workers, but less friendly and radiant.

    This place is open twenty-four hours a day, which means there are two shifts per day and seven days a week. Children whose parents are on night shift at the mine sleep here, which means he has night nurses working for him.

    My heart is loud in my chest for I like what I have seen in so far – the mission statement, the room arrangements, the educational materials, the group sizes, the staff ratio.

    “The children here matter a lot to you,” I voice. “Personally.”

    “I am the son of miners, born into a family of miners.” Governor Azadi keeps his voice low, even though his humble beginnings are known even on Coruscant.

    That background actually set him off from his competitors, gave him all the voices he needed.
    But I am still digging in the dark, when it comes to his true character. There is more underneath the surface. Much more. So I make myself vulnerable and state, “My foster parents have a friend who was very much involved in the spice mining strike on the moons of Naboo. Kalzutan Opreka.”

    He looks impressed. “The Union Chairperson.”

    “The very one.”

    “Pardon me for saying so, but Queen Jamilla did not show much wisdom back then.” His annoyance is palpaple. “Putting refugees before spice mining products, especially kassoti, is foolish.”

    “Yet, you defy the band-new Imperial Ministry of Education. For these children here.”

    “Is that so?” His words are but a breath of air, well controlled though. He also guards his counternance well.

    “The Emperor will not be pleased.”

    “And you? What about you? A star pupil of Dalus Othona?” His gaze intensifies, shining through me like X ray beams. “A protégé of Mistress Shift?”

    There are just a few things I can lie about. Education is not among them. The truth shines right through my happy eyes.

    His smile is triumphant. “The Core is very far away from us right now. Sooner or later we will fall in line. Give Lothal the chance to recover from the wounds of the Clone Wars first. Then it will learn to embrace the chances the Empire brings with it.”

    We stop in front of a classroom that has a big panorama window.

    “Let me tell you something, Mistress Samye. Something personal, for you seem to need it from me.” His eagle sharp features become softer. T'is in the blood, my father would say. Mining is in the blood. Like a vein of doornium. T'is the bread of life. Eat, sleep, live and breath it. She's your salvation and your downfall. Make you reckless, make you bold. Many a friend it break. And many more will follow. T'is a fools game. T'will end in tears.”

    There it is, the fuel of his true ambitions. It what makes him the man he is.

    Governor Azadi squares his shoulders. “The point is, I want those children here to lack of nothing. They will not have a rough start like I did. Of course my parents loved me. I am fully aware of this. But I want things different for them. Much more different.”

    He is true to Lothal’s soil, to the people on it. Not to the regime.

    “From my point of view individual attention matters,” Governor Azadi says unasked. “Besides, environmental motivators can either make or break you.”

    Before I can say anything in return, he rushes to open a glass door for a human woman, dressed all in white and violet. Her head dress reminds me faintly of the montrals of a Togruta, who has not reached adolescence yet. She clutches on to a lively bundle.

    “Mira!” the Governor exclaims, warmth in his gaze, while recognition of a different kind squeezes the air out of my lungs.

    “This is outrageous, Ryder!” Concern, not hatred, is written all over the woman’s cooper face. “Ezra is barely a month old and I have have to enlist him for the crèche? Why is that?”

    “Ephraim and you should be a good example for the local community. Your son was born on Empire Day.” There is regret in his deep voice. “If Pryce Mining...”

    “Really?” She gives him a dark look, her mother instinct on fire. “This is about a petty war between two rival companies? Between this Arihnda woman and you? I am still breast feeding my son.”

    The Force blends out my auditory perception, awakens different senses that I usually keep locked up inside me. I am basically pushed towards the baby boy.

    A blue pair of eyes gazes at me.

    In a galaxy full of trillions of beings I keep bumping into blue eyed Force sensitive individuals.

    “Hallo, Ezra!” I say, but my lips are glued together while I do. It is my mind that is speaking.

    Glee shines in his eyes, but something else, too. Potential. His choices will help shape the future of the galaxy that we live in. Children are our new hope. My uncle cannot wipe out every single one of them. Not even an Emperor gets away with child murder on this scale.

    I can tell that his folk come from the first settlers, very religious and hard working people. Like Lor and his clan on Jedha.

    “Please take care!” I beg him and friendly gurgling sounds back at me.

    Ezra might be aware that there is evil around him and far beyond his reach, but he is one with the Living Force and relishes the small pleasures of his young life: the bonding with his mother, her milk and decent sleep. Plus fresh nappies.

    “Imperius Unitada ober Totallex”, I hear Governor Azadi say and turn my face towards him.

    “Empire united over all?” translates the woman called Mira. “What about the Republic? Of democracy? The holy scriptures of my people remind us about the Rule of Darkness. It happened in the days of the Elders, but it all might happen again.”

    “Darkness? Palpatine brought back the light of truth after years of corruption and intrigues by the Jedi order.”

    I know exactly, to what she is referring to, but I do not mean to interrupt them. Instead, I start wandering around on my own.

    There is laughter and happiness everywhere. As if there has never been a war in the first place.

    When I pause at a door, where a morning circle is going to be held, a Twi'lek woman with pinkish skin waves me in. “Please join us, Mistress Samye!”

    The entire teaching staff seems to be informed about me. It could be worse. But it makes me sad that no one, but my new husband will ever call me Mistress San Tekka. It has such a nice sound to it.

    “Who is the lady?” asks a charming gotal with orange eyes and yellowish fur. It seems to be a girl.

    “Somebody who might be working here in future,” the kindergarten teacher beams. “As my boss.”

    This revelation does not send bone deep fear into my body. There is another visitor. My stomach churns.

    The children’s heads swing to the door like rubber bands.

    “Wow, that is a cool storm trooper!” calls a Bardottan, bending his long, curved neck in awe. “He even has a cape.”

    Cold sweat covers my entire body and I give my best not to faint.

    The newcomer stares at me unwavering, at least I believe him to do so. His helmet, done like a skull, is black, with a highly polished finish. I suspect it’s woodoo hide. Sheev likes to use this material to polish his traditional Sith armour and ancient Sith droids with personally. It is an almost religious act for him, somewhat related to honouring the ancestors.

    But I am not facing an ancestor or a droid. This thing breathes. Hard and laborious, but it does. This is worse than Grievous. Even worse than the beings I have witnessed on Korriban and Malachor.

    The Twi'lek frowns, her lekku twitching in discomfort. But not for long. “Can I help you, sir?” she bravely offers the stranger.

    “I am here on behalf of the Empire,” he offers with a voice that is modulated beyond recognition. It might have been human once. I am not sure yet.

    “You are three days early,” the kindergarten teacher muses. “But well, the Ministry of Education and Learning used to be unconventional in the days of the Republic, too.”

    He saunters closer. “Surprise is always the best method to test somebody’s efficiency.”

    Her sweet smile is honest. “In that case, be very welcome, sir!”

    The poor woman believes him to be an education inspector. She has no idea that he can easily rip her apart with the powers of his mind. My eyes wander towards a cylindrical item that it attached to his utility belt. If he chooses to light that sabre with its crimson blade, it will be a masacre. He can cut the children apart within a few heart beats. We are all at his mercy.

    “Why don’t you sit down, my dear inspector?” I suggest and smile my brightest smile. “Please do join us on this promising day, where the future of the Empire is gathered!”

    “Oh yes,” beams the Bardottan. “We are an Empire now. Not some boring Republic. Yeah! Palpatine rules.”

    Whatever the Sith apprentice of my uncle truly had in mind is gone. His helmet makes a movement that is close to a self-ingrossed nod. Then his gloved hand closes around my offered fingers, without hurting them.

    It pains him to sit down, but he does not show it. But I know the agony is there. It ebbs into my own bones.

    After a while I forget about his brooding presence. I simply am and participate in the morning circle. There are songs that I know, others that I do not.

    I laugh with the children. I sing and play with them, despite my old traumas that stirr in a dark corner of my mind. I can survive this meeting.

    A certainty stays though.

    If death has not come for me today, he will be around another day. The sacrifice has been offered. I only will know when it is accepted.

    What makes me happy is that I am forming a tandem team with the other kindergarten teacher already. We pretend that all is normal. It is not difficult to like her. She has a pleasant and warm soul, that shines right out of her eyes. Plus she reminds me of Ahetnigac, my beloved foster sister. They even seem to be around the same age.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2018
  5. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Aug 31, 2004
    Ah, now more comes out about the governor's perspective. Enjoyed meeting her colleague, and Ezra! [face_dancing] The mysterious Imperial visit could have thrown everyone into confusion but Nagina and the rest keep their composure. :)
    DarthUncle, Kahara and AzureAngel2 like this.
  6. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 21, 2016
    Darth Vader visits a kindergarten and the kids think he's awesome.

    I find it quite adorable, but also slightly disturbing.
  7. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha: Tarkin would say that Nagina is charming to the last. ;)

    @Cowgirl Jedi 1701: As I told you before, a Vader fan girl like me is seldom disturbed by a Vader cameo. Or his unpredictable nature.

    We have reached the end now. Only the Epilogue will follow this update next weekend.

    I would like to thank everybody who has travelled with Nagina to the crazy time shortly before and after Sheev became the Emperor.

    @DarthUncle: Without you, I never would have had the courage to post this annoyingly long story, that I doubted very much and actually still do when I am in a dark mood. You actually never doubt me or my abilities. Not even when it came to entering the room where the coffin of my father stood and sitting down, holding hands with him. Or having a calm voice during the wake with family and friends, while holding a speech in front of those 80 people. You believe in me as much as the creché children that I work with since the summer. First in one location and from October on in another! Thank you for sharing plot bunnies and the sacrifice of your sleep here and there!

    @Kahara: Thanks for undertaking the maddening task to beta-edit this! Never worry for being slow! Never ever! You help me a lot!

    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha: Thanks for stepping in here and there with the beta-edit and for your great enthusiasm!

    @Darth Gangrenous: Thanks for being there, no matter what, old friend!

    @earlybird-obi-wan: Also a big thank you to you and your big heart!

    @Chyntuck: Thanks that you made some time for this story here, even though you seem like the busiest woman on earth at times! Your comments mean a lot to me.

    @Cowgirl Jedi 1701: Also a thanks to you for finding the time to comment. I know this story got interrupted by life a lot of times, but you also stuck to it to the end. I lost a lot of readers who would comment on the way, but you always popped up again!


    And here we go, the last Chapter:

    Chapter 35:

    After the morning circle, I join the daily activities and get pretty immersed by that. I have a mighty shadow though. It follows me even outside to the play ground.

    “Did he send you or are you here on your own initiative?” I ask the Sith lord in my wake.

    He does not answer straight away. When he does, his voice is flat and seems to come from a place many light years away. “What makes you so special to him? Why are you allowed to live? Despite all you did.”

    His questions show me that Sheev has no interest of enlightening him. I can imagine why that is, but I want to put my assumptions to the test. Taking a deep breath, I look up into his optical lenses. It seems that just for a brief moment human eyes appear behind them, but it might have been a trick of the light.

    “Come, walk with me!” I suggest.

    He follows in silence.

    We reach a space, where no playing children are. Here we are also sheltered from the gazes of others.

    “I hope you can take the bitter truth,” I smile. “It might change the views on your master forever more.”

    “Leave that to me,” he gives back almost mechanically.

    “Very well then.” I gaze into his masked face. “There once was a house maid, a bastard child. In secret, she had a daughter on her own. Her half-brother took pity, a totally new sentiment to a Palpatine.”

    Before the Sith lord can stop me, I place my right hand on his chest. Right above the place where I suspect a human heart to beat.

    “What ever other feelings exist in my uncle, I do not know. Killing Master Windu has changed him forever more. He is one with the dark side now.”

    The tears flow like the Solleu River. My only weapon to protect me. Holy water, so to speak.

    “I have no clue who you once were, into what a creature you have changed or what your future by his side is. Just be careful! The relationship between a Sith and his apprentice is not one forged by love and trust.”

    He stands as still as a statue. Only his breath hints that he is alive.

    More tears flow, because I cannot help it. My own bitterness about Sheev’s choices simply mix with sympathy for the stranger. “There will always be deceit and pain. Until you break the chains. But that is up to you. To nobody else.”

    With that I lean my head against the broad chest, careful not to press any buttons of his life support system by accident. “You already lost a lot, I can tell that. I could ask you if it was worth the price, but only you can do so yourself.”

    Laughing children, a human boy and a girl, run by in the distance. They are not aware of us, but we have full sight on them.

    “I will not judge you and your actions,” I move on. “Just remember that power, unlimited power, does not come for free.”

    “Does it not?” he bites back.

    I shake my head and step away from him. “Read the old scripts of Darth Revan, who was a wanderer between the light and the darkness his entire existence long!”

    “Revan,” he echoes.

    Remembering Darth Malak, I dare to freely quote, “Saviour, conqueror, hero, villain. All things… and yet nothing. In the end, he belonged to neither the light nor the darkness. Like him you, milord will forever stand alone.”

    My name sounds through the garden. It is Governor Azadi.

    “Forget about ever having children on your own, you would corrupt them as well!” I start to cleaning my face with my right sleeve. “Forget about the faintest of friendship even! The dark side of the Force is an all consuming mistress and very jealous. I wish you all the best, milord. Whatever it is that you crave.”

    I take my leave after bowing to him like a mere servant girl would in front of a Sith emperor.
    “Do you not even want to know my name?” he asks sharply, somewhat offended.

    Without turning around, I answer. “There is no need. Your deeds will make it known to me all to soon.”

    I leave the Sith lord standing where he is. With renewed determination I seek out Governor Azadi. There is much to discuss about my terms of employment, the boy named Ezra included. He will not be snatched off his mother’s chest so easily. Not while I am around.


    When Orson returns to my cottage in the evening, he is in a bad temper. From the moment he enters, he starts ranting about Tarkin. I end up in a world of deception, spy stories and testoterone. So I decide not to bother him about my adventures or with the arrival of Lor, who is tucked up in my bed already. Instead, I play the perfect hostess, pull him tea and give him meat pie. At the right moments I smile or pause to listen to him with a concerned face.

    Grumbling, Orson retreats into the living-room and closes the door behind him. A sure sign he wants to be on his own now.

    There is a lot of cleaning to do, but the butterflies that stir inside me give me speed. After just twenty minutes, I hit the pillow with brushed teeth and wearing my favourite night gown.

    “Mistress San Tekka, you look mighty fine,” my husband whispers and his long fingers start to explore my side of the bed.

    Giggling as hushed as I can, I let Lor tease me.

    He has had a rough time since we last saw one another. The former Jedi temple has become too well guarded for further looting. My uncle has made a construction site out of it. A side project that Orson never mentioned. I am disgusted.

    “Imperial palace?” I get out.

    My husband presses me against him. “Spare your anger for other occasions, Nagina.”

    And he knows practices that help to stir my mind elsewhere. His bearded face soon is everywhere, leaving kisses.

    All is well, until we hear noises from the hallway. Tasia has much more grace and Bathseba is hunting outside.

    “I leave my socks on, okay?” Lor sniggers and grasps one of my pink morning robes.

    When my bedroom door bangs open violently, my husband has already climbed out of the window. He will seek shelter at Old Jho’s place. For now.

    Orson gasps like some dying person. Since my eyes are adjusted to the darkness in the room, I can tell that he is only in his pyjama breeches and shivers all over with anger. He clings on to his blaster pistol.

    Of course he makes a tantrum, but after meeting the second Sith lord of the realm earlier on all fear has left me. When I think, that I have had my fill of curses and rants, I throw in, “Can we all go back to bed now?”

    He sinks down the opposite wall in slow motion. “Why are you doing this to me?”

    “You are doing this to yourself.” I place my head back on my pillow. “A closed door should remain a closed door.”


    When I find Officer Cadet Kallus in my kitchen the next morning, helping himself to my cookie jar, I let out a sigh. “Orson really took it very hard, did he not?”

    There is humour in his eyes, but his face remains a smooth surface. “Today you are coming with me, milady. To my office!”

    “For what? Questioning?”

    He takes a considerate sip out of a mug, that contains hot chocolate. Then he produces an item, that I usually keep hidden between my panties. This lightsabre once belonged to no one else but Jocasta Nu, Lor’s old acquaintance.

    My face goes crimson. “You had no right.”

    “The whole house was full of such forbidden possessions,” he answers with a shrug. “More or less cleverly hidden.”

    I try to hold on to the back of my wooden kitchen chair.

    “This is what we will do.” There is a hardness in his voice that has not been there before. “We will take one of your smaller moving boxes, fill it with all the evidence and bring this one to my contemporary office in town. There you will file a complaint against the man who pushed all this stolen goods on you.”

    “Why should I?”

    “He will live if you do.” He gets up, reminding me how tall he is. “Commander Krennic asked me to deal with this. His patience is used up and he feared that he is too tempted to put you over his knee.”

    “Pah!” I get out.

    “I told him that there are better educational methods. Plus it comes in handy that one of the Imperial courtiers happens to be in town.”


    It is not a duel of strength. From my side it is more a matter of exhaustion. “You have no right to claim the contains of this box.”

    The Sith lord does not twitch, just keeps staring at me in an unnerving manner. This he has been doing for exactly one hour. I bet that his lenses are equipped with a HUD that supplies him with data.

    “Are you watching a HoloNet drama in there? Or do you read something more important than my face?” I accuse him.

    He lowers his helmet a bit. “I can fully understand why a lot of people want you dead,” he leers with his computer voice.

    Enough is enough.

    I tear off my scarf, expose my bare throat to him. “I am defenceless!” I call out. “Take your weapon! Strike me down with all of your hatred and your journey towards the dark side will be complete!”

    The desk, that has served as a wall between us, gets thrust aside in slow motion. It smashes into the wall. Alexandre Kallus, who has left the room half an hour ago with some excuse, will not like the personal touch of his new interior designer.

    “Enough!” the Sith lord booms. “You will give me the necessary information on your secret lover now.”

    I spit right between his leather boots. “Come and get it! If you dare that is. For you are just the student, not the master yet. But I warn you, milord, I am not easily impressed.”

    His breath goes like cold wind.

    Cruelty curls in the corners of my mouth. “I have seen Sheev kill his own mother with no mercy. Her cerebral matter stuck everywhere. Force lightning was too good for her.”

    The next thing that I know is that something sweeps me off my feet and end up dangling right in front of him. I twist and squirm.

    “No, I will not harm you, but you will open up to me,” he muses.

    “In some telepathical cultures this would count as rape.” I narrow my eyes. “But you do not care what others think of you.”

    “No,” he answers matter-of-factly, while his gloved hands frame my face.

    The touch of his mind is more gentle than I have expected it to be.

    In one go I throw it all at him: each single memory and experience of mine until the day that I met Lor. He never comes to see my second husband’s face though.

    Blood drips down my nose onto my lips, staining my teeth, but I keep throwing my past at him like fits full of sand.

    The impact is too much for the Sith lord. Full cooperation was the last thing that he had expected. Flabbergasted, he drops me on the floor.

    I manage to manipulate the closing mechanism of the door.

    Screaming for help, I run down the corridor.

    I am not followed.

    The face of Officer Cadet Kallus is ashen, while he makes a beeline for me. “Milady, I never wanted that to happen. I was told a courtier was going to meet us, not a grim warrior in armour.”

    I hold up a hand to stop him from coming too close. “Get me home now and on the way contact Doctor Robotham on Coruscant!”


    Orson confines me to bed with tranquillizers, which I take without any fight. While I let the effect kick in, he has a hushed com conversation with my former therapist. Later on, he and Alex have a huge fight.

    At a point he comes into the bedroom and sits down at the edge of my mattress, taking my hand. “What has happened today, Ina?”

    My lips are already stiffened by the medication, but I manage to say, “Dunno.”

    Tears leak onto my skin. “You break my nerves! Who was the high ranking officer this der-brain contacted about the Jedi junk?”

    “Dunno.” I repeat, a stupid grin on my face.

    Suddenly, his mouth is near the shell of my left ear. “You silly beastie!” he sniffs. “How can I protect you when you are acting out like this?

    His com bleeps almost angrily.

    “Sheev,” I sigh.

    “Not now!” His grip intensifies. “That blasted box was delivered back to you. With a ribbon in Tyrian purple around it. The note attached to it was barely readable. As if a dyslexic child had tried its utmost. It said...”

    “Wha?” I press on.

    “Yours, not mine.”


    My house arrest does not stop Lor from sneaking throughout the next weeks and keep my company at night. Nor does it keep Governor Azadi away from the property. The latter quarrels a lot with Orson, but to no avail.

    When my first working day dawns, I am brought to a charming little cottage at the edge of the settlement.

    “Average personnel count: one kindergarten teacher and four babies.” Orson cannot help but to look mightily pleased with the arrangements. “Tomorrow, you will start with one child and the rest will follow bit by bit.”

    I raise an eyebrow at him. “And why the tether?”

    His smile is forced. “Your ankle monitor simply shows me and my men where you are at all times. And it’s for your safety.”

    I close the wooden door straight into his face.

    “Ina, c'mon! There is no other way after what you have pulled!” he shouts through the door that is not thick enough to drown his words out.

    “Why not a slave collar?” With a grim face I have to find out there there is no lock.

    “Because I love you!” he claims.

    I lean against the door, hoping my body can block him out for a while. “Next thing is that I find a weird scar on my shoulder or elsewhere on my body.”

    “Nonsense. Your dignity is holy to me. A homing transponder will not get surgically implanted. I swear!” His voice sounds somewhat muffled now, as if he is kneeling. “Please let me in!”

    “We will not open the door,” I mumble, thinking of an old fairy tale. “You are not our mother. She has a soft and gentle voice, but your voice is rough. You are the wolf.”

    “What are you saying?”

    I let my face sink into my hands. “We will not open the door. Our mother does not have a black foot like you. You are the wolf.”

    Of course, he smashes a window to get in. But much, much later.

    I am not happy to face him. Or to drown in his desperate embrace.

    That night he takes me out to a fancy restaurant in Capital City, but I do not touch my drinks or my food.

    When Lor hops over the window sill late at night, he has a basket with him. It contains a lot of goodies from Old Jho. But the best one is my husband himself.


    One morning Orson is gone without saying good-bye. There is reason for concern. Normally, he does his bed with military neatness. This time the living-room sofa is in complete disarray still.

    “Something is up,” I tell myself.

    The HoloNet news are not promising either. With a grave face the speaker announces, “The Graduation Night for the Raithal Academy has been disrupted by multiple explosions. The government is working to assess the damage. We have confirmation that the situation is under control. Sources close to the investigation report that Saw Gerrera, a notorious war criminal from Onderon, is implicated. We will keep you updated.”

    Knowing how the Empire’s propaganda works, that translates to quiet a disaster.

    I try to contact Sheev via his personal comlink, but to no avail.

    Since there is nothing that I can do, I get ready for work.

    Since nine months I just have two children in my group. Ahuva, a human girl that is barley 1,5 standard years old. And Jax, a Devaronian boy, not 1 standard year old yet. Both have helped me immensely to find my inner balance again. To just be the person that I mean to be.

    “Tasia?” I call, once I step into the garden. But she does not appear.

    I put her bowl of water on the threshold anyway.

    Perhaps she is having a stroll with Bathseba.

    A cold gust of wind makes me shiver and I hurry back into the cottage to get my cloak, but then I choose the one that my uncle left in my care. Seeing it, gives me some strange comfort.

    I stroke over the smooth surface of the ancient Sith brooch and whisper a local children’s rhyme that comes into my mind, “Loth-rat, Loth-cat, Loth-wolf, run. Pick a path and all is done.”

    I carefully lock the door and tug the key away in a side pocket of my cloak. Orson has a spare key and Lor, who can easily find ways into tombs and temples, has other means of getting inside.

    From the corners of my eyes I catch a movement. Something white, but it is not Tasia. A strange animal snarls at me. “Are you…?” I ask, but when I step closer it is gone. Just a mirage, an illusion.

    Perhaps Orson starts putting drugs into my food to keep me tame and manageable. Not that I want to accuse him of anything, but the animal that I just saw is extinct here on Lothal. Lot-wolfs are the stuff of legends.

    My crono beeps.

    Startled, I run towards the kindergarten.

    Jhothal is strangely quiet this morning. Dark shapes, having the size of humanoids, seem to crawl around the houses.

    At my arrival I find the kindergarten front door wide open.

    Rebecca is always punctual with little Ahuva, but normally, both wait in the garden for me.

    Frowning, I step into the building and get faced with the most dreadful sight straight away. The group room is but a mess. Toys, furniture and teaching materials are destroyed. But that is not the worst of it. In a far corner, where a wind chime is supposed to hang, my beloved Loth-Cat dangles from the ceiling. Her abdominal wall has been opened and her intestines have come out.

    Sobbing, I sag down on my knees. “Oh, Tasia!”

    A cold piece of steal is pressed against my throat.

    My fingers cramp around the Sith brooch, drawing blood.

    “Down with the Empire!” whispers a raucous voice behind me and cuts my windpipe.

    Darkness catches me, forever more. Like a lover it encloses around me in a velvet embrace.
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2018
  8. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Aug 31, 2004
    Wow, what intensity up to the last. Gripping last lines! =D= =D=

    Nagina is one of the looong list of endearing OCs which fit so snug in SW. This list is getting longer and longer. @};- But I'm not complaining. ;) :D
    DarthUncle, AzureAngel2 and Kahara like this.
  9. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 21, 2016
    I honestly find know what to say about this, except wow. Just wow.

    And also, Saw Gerrerra, you suck.
  10. DarthUncle

    DarthUncle Jedi Master star 5

    Mar 20, 2005
    Saw Gererra huh? I wouldn't have expected that. And I do suspect someone helped him find his target too!

    So, I didn't manage to comment for a week or two online. I am still happy to read the way you have funny moments with Darth Vader and other Big name imperials, without making them a joke (something SW Rebels sometimes suffers from) or diminishing their terror to others but Nagina.
    As you say, Tarkin would call her 'charming to the end', I'd have expected him to find a way to give her that message at the end too, but I guess he can't risk the emperor ever finding out.

    And that Sith brooch, I think we read about it before (wait, didn't Sheev actually intentionally give it to her before he first sent her away to Lothal, somewhere in the early chapters? Guess that didn't work as well as he wanted, or maybe too well?)

    Very sorry the lothcat had to suffer. And where is the convor by the way, did she know this was going to happen, and see it as the ending that Nagina decided on (in that temple on Naboo)?

    Oh, rebels, did you just indicate Nagina also saw a Loth-Wolf that noone else saw, like Ezra Bridger does years later halfway through the last season of Rebels?

    And so it is ended. I know you will give us some other perspectives on this, looking forward to them. I'll miss Nagina, she was a fun and endearing presence in my life for a good time. The galaxy will miss her.
  11. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha: You are one of my most dedicated readers. Thanks for that again! Fanfics also lives because people like you are around with radiant feedback!

    @Cowgirl Jedi 1701: Your eyes are laser sharp and you were one of the few persons to figure out who did the deed in the end. Well done, Holmes! But remember, Moriarty never works on his own. Saw Gerrerra was just the blunt instrument. Nothing more, nothing less.

    @DarthUncle: Your intuition serves you right. Actually there is a diary from Orson (part of the DCC challenge) and a piece for the Disney quote challenge which I will post after THIS:


    Motionless, Emperor Palpatine sat in his office chair. He was presented with all the known evidence, concerning the death of his niece. At the end of the report, the elderly man turned and gazed out of the double-glazed transparisteel panoramic window.

    It was noon in the senatorial district of Coruscant. Billions of people were busy living their lives. It was a bee hive that never slept. The loss of Nagina on far away Lothal meant nothing to most citizens out there.

    “Only the good die young,” the Emperor muttered, his mouth line joyless. “Only evil seems to live forever.”

    His niece had been a good person. But he would do her the favour not to order state mourning. Nor would he seek out her murderer. She never had been vengeful. There had been no sithly bone in her body. Forgiveness had been essential for her. He would do her this last favour.

    “You contacted Commodex Tahn about the details of the funeral service?” he addressed the man who had loved Nagina like a brother, but had failed her as her protector.

    “Yes, my Emperor,” said Commander Krennic, still bending his knee. “She had mentioned his name when talking about her mother.”

    The old man’s thoughts travelled back to the day, when he had found his half-sister Mandré, a service maid of House Palpatine, in the fireplace room. Her skull had been smashed in with the walking stick of his father Cosinga.

    There had been too much violence in Nagina’s life from the very beginning. He wished things could have been much different for her.

    “A good choice, you can go through with it.” The elderly man nodded to himself and not towards the kneeling figure in front of him. “I will not attend the funeral service, but I want to pay for it. My personal household cash should be sufficient to cover all the costs.”

    Looking ahead of him, the Emperor pondered for a while. Then he switched on a large projection screen. Snap-shots of many individuals showed up, some of them decent citizens, others the lowest scum of the galaxy. Encrypted data flew by.

    “You have my blessing to invite those who cared for her, Orson. Twenty, forty, sixty, eighty, a hundred - I do not care. Contact even some of those bounty hunters, if you must. It is up to you. You organize the entire thing, flower arrangements included. The Anils will have to live with it. She was mine before she came into their care.”

    The high ranking officer saluted. “As you wish, my Emperor.”

    The chair swung around. “What I really wish for is… argh, never mind, Orson.”

    Concern showed on Commander Krennic’s face. “Is there anything to appease you, my Emperor?”

    Pale fingers started tapping on the chair arms. “Not really no.”

    The old man would never forgive himself that he had not been available to his niece in her hour of need. He temporarily had been beaten by an enemy. Someone whose ambitions he had not taken serious enough.

    Suddenly, it was dead silent. “Wait, there is something!” he addressed the high ranking officer.

    “Yes, please?”

    The Emperor leaned forward, his unhealthy looking eyes burning like twin flames. “You will help me to refit the ruined Jedi Temple into a palace, my palace. But you will not claim the glory for it. This is your penance.”

    “Okay.” Commander Krennic looked mollified. “Fair enough.”

    The Emperor frowned, a familiar shape catching his eyes. “There is something next to your right code cylinder.” He pointed at the other man’s chest. “What are you carrying with you?”

    “I almost forgot about it.” The high ranking officer fumbled around and produced a small metal item. “That blasted creature yucked it up, but I cleaned it for you.”

    Irritated, the old man glared at Commander Krennic. And it had nothing to do with the broad Chandrilan accent of the much younger man.

    “See, there was that stupid convor. It basically stuck to Ina since Jedha. Used to be very protective about her.”

    The Emperor rose in anger. “Why was I not informed before?” he demanded to know. “Convorees are holy animals.”

    “Holy? Nay, there is nothing holy about Bathseba, believe me.” Commander Krennic smirked. “She is simply bad news. For some reason she showed up during the coroner’s inquest and puked the heirloom out. As if she was disgusted. She took flight immediately, never looking back at poor Ina.”

    The old man listened intensely in the Force. There was a faint heartbeat. It came from within the Sith artefact.

    “Give me the brooch!” One of the claw hands opened. “Now!”

    Gingerly, the high ranking officer handed the Palpatine heirloom over. “Will that be all? Are we finished now? Can I go home?”

    The Emperor kept staring at the trinket with a scary grin. A new option just had opened up unexpectedly. It was too good to be true. He only would need to contact Kamino and do some intense research in his Sith library. “No. I have made up my mind.”

    Commander Krennic looked startled. “Is this about my project? Are you going to take it away from me and give it to Tarkin?”

    The cruel laughter of the Emperor sounded through the office. “I really should, shouldn’t I?” He stopped and became serious again. “You will build me something else. The palace can wait. What I need from you is… a tower.”

    “What?” The high ranking officer blinked.

    “I will need a tower on Scarif for keeping things safe. Data files, objects of means, a special medical chamber.” The yellow eyes narrowed. “Show me your true value, Orson. Build me that tower and all will be well.”

    Commander Krennic was almost on his way out, when the Emperor started speaking again. But not to him.

    “Rapunzel, Rapunzel,
    Let down your hair to me.”

    Once more laughter filled the office, unsettling and maddening.

    “Rapunzel, Rapunzel.”

    When the high ranking officer turned around, he saw that the old man cradled the brooch like a new born baby. Quickly, he averted his gaze. Mourning had various forms. And Nagina’s demise was still inconceivable. But it would not bring her back to life when he lost his mind about it, too. He needed to go on with his duties. That was what she would have wanted from him.

    Trying to look nothing but professional, Commander Krennic hurried past the desk of Dar Wac, a male Rodian. He did not notice the strong smell of perfume that hung in the air. Nor the person who was hiding in the shadows, dressed in expensive robes.

    A satisfied smile lay on Sate Pestage’s lips.

    Nagina was no more and there were a lot of allies to thank for that. It had been a group effort. Patience always paid out.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2018
  12. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Aug 31, 2004
    A gripping conclusion. Kudos for wrapping things up. DRL often is icky for you but your talent never flags. @};- =D= [:D]
    Kahara, DarthUncle and AzureAngel2 like this.
  13. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 21, 2016
    Bravo. Excellent. Now you need to write her funeral. Maybe instead of mourning her, it could be a celebration of her life, like a wake. Maybe her musician friends could play "Only The Good Die Young".
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  14. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 11, 2014
    Pestage? PESTAGE??? What a [censored][censored][censored]!!!

    Oh, wow, I missed so much with this last batch of updates! Nagina got to run into Ezra, however briefly; she had an encounter with Vader – and what an encounter! The scene where she releases all her memories into him is shivers-shivers-shivers! Lor coming in and out of the window (in pink night gowns no less!)... and Krennic. Oh Krennic. He has failed on so many levels here. The fact that he'd risk an encounter between Nagina and Vader alone is evidence that he's in completely over his head, and when Saw Gerrera comes (prompted by Pestage no doubt) Krennic just isn't there playing watchdog, because, well... he'd bitten off more than he can chew.

    And the final touch, Palpatine going half mad or at least incoherent, and demanding that the Citadel Tower be built, presumably to keep the last memento from Nagina... Wow. Just wow.

    This has been an amazing story, Azure! I need to catch up with all the spin-offs now; I've had a look at your various vignette threads and I know that there's a lot of material to enjoy there. But meanwhile, I'll just say thanks for sharing this!
  15. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    @WarmNyota_SweetAyesha: DRL is indeed very unfair as the start of this year proves, but writing, fitness, friends and welness help. Plus my dear husband @DarthUncle.

    @Cowgirl Jedi 1701: That is a kind nudge and I might actually do that soon. Right now, I am in several tight situations that demand a lot from me.

    @Chyntuck: You are very, very welcome! And thanks for so much praise. Plus do not hurry with the spin-offs! You have more important things to take care of, mostly your husband, your many own fanfics & all the other bright fan fic writers that are around on the boards.
  16. Kahara

    Kahara Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Mar 3, 2001
    Wow! :eek: I feel like I am not doing this conclusion justice, but don't want to wait too long.

    We all knew something Bad was in the works for Nagina, but I still felt caught off guard by the violence of her death. Gerrera was an unlikely assassin, and even before the reveal about Pestage it seemed suspect that he'd bother to track down Nagina on his own. (Not that they got along at all, but he's got a war to wage and all that.) I felt so bad for her finding her pet like that so soon before -- what a terrible image to have in her last moments. :(

    Nagina will be missed so much by those whose lives she touched. It's a strange irony that with her also goes the better part (however small) of two of the most dangerous men in the Galaxy. But also Lor, Old Jho, her foster family, little Mara, and so many others. @};- I can only hope that her network of allies can weather the fallout as well as possible.

    This has been a truly epic tale that weaves in behind the scenes and enriches the stories we see. =D= Congratulations on making it to the end. (If we are not waiting for another epilogue still, and even so, you know what I mean. :))
    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha likes this.
  17. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    @Kahara: I will miss Nagina, too. She is like a bad habit that does not die. ;)
    Kahara likes this.
  18. Mandalorian Riddler

    Mandalorian Riddler Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 27, 2018
    Good read like most here so far :D
  19. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2018
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  20. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
  21. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    Well, a certain poem by a writer who already inspired me as a title choice for this humble story here has triggered the sequel.

    Here a sneak preview of "And death shall have no dominion":


    In the early morning light the Citadel tower seemed unreal. Its entire metal façade was glittering as if someone had sprinkled fairy dust all over it. This way the military building looked more like the enchanted abode of a princess, ready for the rescue. But there was no dragon to be slain. Nor a brier hedge to overcome. There was only a strict time schedule to follow. Some acts of diversionary tactics also needed to be displayed.

    Chess, an ancient strategy game, had only three rules. They said, “Carefully, carefully, carefully.”

    The Emperor was certainly nobody to trifle with. Especially, when it was about his personal belongings.

    “I am not afraid.” Orson Krennic smiled to himself, while quoting these words from memory. They originated from his old fairy tale book, he used to have back on Chandrila. “I must go and see this Sleeping Beauty.”

    A squad of Coastal defender stormtroopers, more commonly known as shoretroopers, came marching towards him. He neither slowed down or showed great haste. Walking as casual as possible under the circumstances, he met the men in the middle of the square.

    Their leader, recognizable via his sand blue stripe that went along the top of his chest plates and onto the top of his shoulder guard, held up a hand. He came to a halt and so did the soldiers.

    “Pete,” the masked man greeted Orson Krennic. “Long time no see!”

    “Trouble on top of the circus again.”

    “If you cannot fix that, nobody can.”

    Against Imperial protocol they gave each other a high five.

    “Smell you later, Daggett!” Orson Krennic laughed.

    “Put some cans of Corellian ale for us in the fridge, would you,” replied the squad leader. “Field exercise makes thirsty.”

    “I’ll do my best.”

    Grinning, Orson Krennic moved on, trying not to thread with the dignity and purpose of an Imperial officer. Instead he walked like the farm boy that he used to be a life time ago.

    To the military staff of this base he was not the director of Advanced Weapons Research. Nor was he the architect behind the Imperial security complex here on Scarif. He was simply Pete Rayburn, a radar technician. This alter ego, on which he had carefully worked on the past four years, came with a foolproof disguise. A false beard, a dark-brown wig, spectacles and coloured contact lenses.

    Nobody here on Scarif had ever questioned him. He had joined the men at the cantina tables, had used their rest rooms and showers side by side. There had been wonderful off duty moments. He had played guitar and had sang the songs of their home worlds with them.

    It made Orson Krennic sad, that he would need to betray his comrades within the next hour. They were good men, loyal to the Empire and less posh than the wowsers that Tarkin gathered around him all the time. Folk like Admiral Conan Antonio Motti and General Cassio Tagge would never know how to relax themselves with a drink at the beach. Or how to fry a lobster above a fire pit.

    Out of the corner of his eyes he saw a movement in the undergrowth. An ugly visage showed itself and revealed a yellowish grin. He knew for certain that it was the Lasat who belonged to Saw Gerrera’s partisans. That vile creature had mercilessly executed Alexandre’s entire platoon on Onderon. Luckily, it had left the able ISB agent alive.

    Orson Krennic knew that his old acquaintance would not agree with his plans for today. But they were based on a simple fact.

    In a galaxy too vast to reign properly, children were able to get lost without a trace. Even those who were stored up like Chandrilan grappaberries in a jam jar.

    To enter the building was not an obstacle for him.

    “Need help with that bag, Pete?” asked the serving officer straight away. He was a normal stormtrooper and guarded the elevators.

    Orson Krennic looked for the man’s ID number. “Nay, Trevor. You would not want to go up there. It is a bit spooky, to be honest. Them spiders weave pretty big nets so close to the dish.”

    Laughing, the stormtrooper let him enter the main lift that went straight up to the top.

    But Orson Krennic did not stay there for long. After a small detour he was inside the secret chamber that the Emperor had wished for straight after the death of his one and only niece.

    He walked straight up to a large clone tank and flattened his nose against its glass. A human being, barely four years old, was slumbering inside. It wore the much younger version of a face that had been dear to him for forty years.

    “Hello there, sleepy head.” His lips kissed the cool glass, leaving stains. “Time to wakey-wakey!”

    But Sleeping Beauty would not open her eyes and smile at him. To wake her up would require a bit more of work from his side.

    He checked his crono and consternated that he had exactly forty minutes left. Then Saw Gerrera would set hell lose on the beaches of Scarif. Around that time he hoped to be far away with his precious ward.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2018
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  22. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    Palps has some ideas I see
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  23. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 14, 2005
    @earlybird-obi-wan, as we already were able to see in the epilogue he has some ideas after the death of his niece.

    Due to the Disney challenge quote @divapilot had given me one of the last remaining quotes and I wrote a one-shoot about Palpatine holding the Sith brooch in his hands.

    Based on his plans for Nagina´s soul I wrote the ritual itself in another one-shoot.

    But once Orson Krennic finds out (it will be mentioned in his diary any time soon), the clone will not stay on Scarif. There will be some lose one-shoots after that. Its safe to say that the entire kidnapping is set in motion by a sad event in the underworld of Coruscant.
    Kahara likes this.